Nearly four years ago, as my wife and I began to plan for retirement, we decided to move south from New England. Both of our children had studied music at the Shenandoah University Conservatory and they were settled into music careers in Virginia and Washington, DC. It made sense to find a new place to live near to both of them.
We wanted a town with a rich historical tradition, with lots of opportunities to become involved in the arts, and with luck maybe even a college environment. We settled on Williamsburg. Everyone knows about Colonial Williamsburg and of course there’s the College of William and Mary. I have discovered that the variety of arts available is also rewarding.
Within months of moving I became a member of the Yorktown Arts Foundation and had my artwork on display in On The Hill Gallery in the neighboring town of Yorktown. I joined two local writer’s groups and was working with a local independent publisher to get my first book published. My wife joined the Williamsburg Women’s Chorus and was preparing for her first concert.
In the short time since we moved to Williamsburg my involvement with these artistic pursuits has expanded. I served three years on the board of the Yorktown Arts Foundation, one year as the president. My art has been on display in local shows. I have sold books at writers’ conferences and book fairs, spoken about my books and my writing at meetings of local groups, and now have two books published with a third ready to begin the editorial process. It seems like there is always a concert or a play or some other event happening in town.
I’m still a newcomer to Virginia and I miss New England. I go back often to visit friends and for special artistic and sports events there. But I love my life immersed in the arts in Williamsburg, Virginia.
Peter Stipe is the author of Finding Our Way; a collection of short stories, and The Art of Love, a novel. Both books are available from Amazon and from high-tide-publications.com and from Peter Stipe.com Facebook: PeterGStipe